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What In 1997 the Environmental Protection AgencyEPA established new ozone standards The EPA also placed special restrictions on twenty-two states in the Ohio Valley and Midwest regions to prevent emissions from coal-burning power plants from being carried into the New England States by wind currents Tennessee is one of these twenty-two states Both of these rulings were recently either struck down or placed on hold by Federal Appeals Courts Why The regulations put into place in 1997 by the EPA were more restrictive than the 1990 standards The regulations limit the amount of ground level ozone and fine particle pollution permitted Ground level ozone is produced by nitrogen oxideNOx which is created by burning fossil fuels Since gasoline and diesel are both fossil fuels then NOx is a major component of automobile emissions Several members of the trucking and fossil fuel industries as well as members of the twenty-two state region have challenged the regulations in Federal Court and have been successful in blocking the implementation of the new rules In the past two months two separate Federal Court Of Appeals panels have ruled that the EPAs authority to establish clean air standards is not properly delegated by Congress under the Clean Air Act Therefore since the EPA is a part of the Executive branch of government and not the Legislative they have no authority to produce regulations on their own The plaintiffs in the case also argued that the amount of pollution a person can tolerate has not been established and until it is the EPA should not make the current regulations more restrictive How The main actors in this event are the American Trucking Associations and their fellow plaintiffs the twenty-two state coalition the EPA and the Federal Appeals Court Why would the American Trucking Associations and other fossil fuel burning industries want to limit the EPAs authority What do they have to gain Last year according to the
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